Oscar Valdez Out Of Navarrete Title Fight With Injury
Controversial former WBC 130 lb. champ Oscar Valdez is injured and won’t be able to fight for another world title early next year.
That’s according to our content partner/insider Dan Rafael, who had more on Wednesday about the Mexican Valdez’s bout for the vacant WBO junior lightweight title with former multi-division champ and fellow Mexican Emanuel Navarrete that was to have been an ESPN/Top Rank Boxing main event in February.
Here’s the latest from Dan’s reporting:
“Barely a week after the vacant WBO junior lightweight title bout between former featherweight and junior lightweight titlist Oscar Valdez and reigning WBO featherweight titlist Emanuel Navarrete was set for Feb. 3, Valdez suffered an undisclosed training injury that forced him to withdraw from the fight, according to Top Rank.
Valdez (30-1, 23 KOs), 31, of Mexico, whose last fight in April was a lopsided decision loss to Shakur Stevenson in a junior lightweight unification fight, was due to return this fall but was also sidelined due to an injury. The two injuries are not related, according to Team Valdez.
Navarrete (36-1, 30 KOs), 27, of Mexico, instead is being lined up to face Liam Wilson (11-1, 7 KOs), 26, of Australia, for the vacant title on the same date in the main event of the Top Rank Boxing on ESPN card at Desert Diamond Arena in Glendale, Arizona. The fight would be Wilson’s first outside of Australia.
The Navarrete-Wilson winner would face Valdez next, according to Top Rank.
The WBO and WBC titles became vacant when Stevenson failed to make weight the 130-pound weight limit for a defense against Robson Conceicao on Sept. 23.
The Feb 3 co-feature will be a 10-round junior welterweight bout between Arnold Barboza (27-0, 10 KOs), 31, of Los Angeles, and Puerto Rico’s Jose Pedraza (29-4-1, 14 KOs), 33, a former lightweight and junior lightweight titlist.”
Valdez previous drug controversy
Valdez has also been in previous controversy for having failed a pre-fight drug test for a PED that is commonly used for weight loss.
Valdez tested positive in a VADA test in the summer of 2021 for Phentermine, which called his then WBC main event title defense for Top Rank for September against Robson Conceicao in Tucson, AZ into question. Ultimately, the promoter, the Pascua Yaqui Tribe and the WBC still allowed the fight to go forward and Valdez won a narrow decision.
Back in April the rising star Stevenson beat Valdez decisively for the unified 130 lb. belts by winning nearly every round in a unanimous decision win and handed Valdez his first loss of his pro career.